October 13th
In the Car with My Dad
by taylor gonzalez

Many years ago, I found myself in the car with my dad. I think he was taking me to the airport, which is why it was so early, like four or five. I was probably flying back home to New York.

I remember I was sitting in the passenger seat, starin3out at the purple florida sky as the sun was getting ready to rise. The highway was empty and calm.

We don’t really talk, my dad and I. We only listen to the morning radio. This particular host was asking people to share stories of unexplained things that happened to them.

I remember one woman called the station and recounted a time she was sleeping when she heard a noise in the other room. It was late at night, and since she lived alone, she was concerned. She went out to the living room and saw, through the dark, a large figure in the corner of the room, about twenty feet from where she stood. The figure was tall, over eight feet, crouching slightly so as not to hit the ceiling. It was covered in shadows.

The woman neither fled nor fought. She could only stand perfectly still and stare, unsure what to do. The presence did not feel good or evil, but powerful. The woman was afraid, but she didn’t fear for her life. She just felt like it didn’t belong there. She wanted it gone.

The figure said nothing but only looked in her direction. After a few long moments, the figure opened its monstrous wings, darkening the room even more than what seemed possible. She braced herself. Finally, the figure beat its colossal wings one time with a loud crack!

The entire apartment filled with a rush of cold air, almost knocking her to the ground. When she looked back up, the room was empty and the air was still. The only sound she heard was her ceiling fan whirring in her bedroom.

After some time, she was able to fall asleep again. The next morning, she awoke to a call from her mother. Her father had passed away in his sleep the night before. He had lung cancer.

Back in the car, the radio host sent it to commercials, and I was able to breathe again. I remember being particularly chilled by her story. To be visited by a creature like that in the dead of night must’ve been a horrific and incredible thing.

My dad must’ve noticed my discomfort. Without looking away from the road, he said:

“You don’t have to worry about him. I haven’t seen him for a while.”

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